by guest columnist Annie
This time two years ago, as I was preparing for a New Year’s Eve Party, my husband dropped the bombshell that he didn’t love me anymore and was leaving me. He wanted a divorce. He’d met someone else.
We’d been together since High School, he was the only boyfriend I ever had, we got married after graduating, I got pregnant, he got to be a big-shot in our town, and got pretty rich doing it. He got to be mayor eventually. I enjoyed the ride, I have to say. I was a soccer mom, on the PTA, known as Mr. Bigshot’s adoring wife, raised our kids, saw them off to university and as soon as they were gone…so was he, apparently.
A 50 year old mother of four, who’d dedicated 30 years of my life to supporting him throughout. Over in an instant.
And I was being traded in for a younger model, someone our daughter’s age.
I’ve played SL for a number of years, but never did I need it more through the past two of them, living in rented rooms having lived in a huge ranch house on the edge of town, without any savings of my own, flipping burgers in a restaurant just to pay the rent.
I must have been a little bit attractive, because guys in the restaurant would hit on me from time to time. Maybe it was just the beer. But I’d ‘got old’, apparently, and ‘let myself go’, apparently.
As we were now communicating through lawyers, I couldn’t hit him, so I hit the gym instead.
I couldn’t believe the amount of hate that spilled out during those long months, and despite spending time working out, a lot, I still looked in the mirror and saw the same old me.
I was even doing what a lot of older women do, talking naked selfies in the mirror in order to try and validate myself as attractive, still youthful, still ‘hawt’.
It didn’t appear to be working until, one day, it did. Another gym session, another lonely drive back to my lonely rented apartment, another naked selfie which I compared to a naked selfie from a couple of months before. And I was thinner, tauter, firmer, more youthful. I worked on at the gym with my personal trainer, now eating more healthily because I really couldn’t afford to live the ‘high on the hog’ lifestyle I’d been used to.
It feels like a betrayal of women to suggest that I had to be thinner, tauter, more youthful, as if we need to be slaves to some male ideal. But it made me feel better, not just in terms of looking better, but just feeling healthier, more full of energy than I’d been in years. And some guys had been hitting on me, so I mustn’t have been totally gross, beer or not. Sure, there were times when I was tempted to bed hop with one or two of them, younger guys, just to prove to myself I could still get a nice looking guy in bed, drunk or not, but I resisted that urge. One, because I’m not the type of gal to sleep around and two, I didn’t want him slapping any ‘adultery’ claim on the divorce.
My makeover continued [Annie tells me that it was a couple of ‘makeover’ stories in the back pages of SLN that inspired her to write up her own story: Ella] with me getting some colour into my greying hair, my glasses disappeared to be replaced by contacts, and I was using the tanning beds to improve my skin’s healthy ‘glow’.
Actually, given the time I dedicated to me rather than him, I felt I was looking ‘hawt’ for a Mom of 4 in her fifties.
What’s even better is that the divorce was finalised recently. It could have been finalised long before, but he fought it for a long time because it meant me getting half of everything.
The best bit was that he hadn’t seen me since I was effectively discarded two years ago this week until we went to court. We could’ve been over and done with long before, but because he fought it and argued it in the hope that I’d fold on a tiny settlement, it dragged on and on. They’ve been two hard years, in and out of the gym, but in the end all the worry was worth it because he hadn’t laid eyes on me for two years, and my makeover took that long to bring me to a place I wanted to be for myself. I think he was shocked at how I looked. I’d like to think that he thought he could have been sharing my bed, that he’d thrown away 30 years over some little trailer park bimbo (she wasn’t from a trailer park, but I like to keep my projected images intact, thanks). That’s the trailer park bimbo who dumped him weeks after he’d lost half his assets to me, lol.
In my dreams, the phone rings and it’s him, sounding drunk and lonely, wishing me a Merry Christmas or Happy New Year, before telling me I was looking stunning and a little bit of him still loves me and maybe we could meet for a drink and start again. Because I’m ‘hawt’. And I tell him sorry, my new boyfriend and I are just going to bed. It probably won’t happen like that, ever, but a girl must have her dreams, of the future, of working hard to remodel herself having been cruelly discarded.
And when her new boyfriend looks at her naked body and smiles and tells her she’s beautiful, the makeover is complete. And, hey, readers, I didn’t dream that last sentence.
Ella adds: Many of us SL avatars, taking advantage of the terrific freebies available at this time of year, do makeovers or tweaks to our avatars, something that generally reinvigorates SL play. A new look leads to new situations, new locations to visit, new friends. So if you’re going to do a makeover for your avatar, the time is now! You won’t regret it.
Ella further adds: Oh my goodness! Two hours after I post this, the UK’s Daily Mail post an article which echoes elements of the above post.